When left-hander Sean Manaea took the mound Tuesday night in Zebulon, N.C., he was staked to an eight-run lead.
And, yes, he did start Tuesday’s game for Class A Wilmington.
Manaea then went out and allowed one run on three hits in seven innings as the Blue Rocks beat Carolina 9-2. He struck out six and walked three.
“Manaea went out there and got the eight runs and he went right after them,” manager Darryl Kennedy said on the team’s web site. “He threw his best professional game, as well, throwing seven strong innings.”
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“That was the biggest thing, (Manaea) would get a little wild, he would walk a guy. (Instead of turning) into two walks and three walks and now bases loaded and then they get a base it, tonight he was able to walk the one guy and then turn around and come back and get in the strike zone and get the ground ball and the double play and the flyouts. That was his biggest key tonight, was being able to stop it, right the ship and go back to work.”
Wilmington got off to a flying start as Jack Lopez doubled, took third on a bunt and scored on a single by Bubba Starling. Starling stole second and Zane Evans walked. Jared Schlehuber followed with a three-run homer.
After an out, Cam Callagher singled and Cody Stubbs walked. Daniel Rockett then clubbed a three-run homer. Carolina switched pitchers, but Lopez singled and scored on Mondesi’s triple.
**Clayton Mortensen had another sluggish start and Jason Adam’s bullpen move continued to be bumpy as Class AAA Omaha lost 6-3 at Memphis. Mortensen gave up four runs on nine hits in 4 2/3 innings, and he has allowed 10 earned runs in 7 1/3 innings over two starts. Adam gave up two runs on four hits in an inning. In two appearances with the Storm Chasers, he has given up four earned runs in 2 2/3 innings. Francisco Pena hit his 20th homer and Justin Maxwell had his seventh longball of the year. Johnny Giavotella had three hits and Whit Merrifield added two hits.
**Ali Williams allowed six runs in the top of the 11th inning as Class AA Northwest Arkansas lost 12-6 to Arkansas. In two innings of work, Williams walked three and gave up four hits. The Naturals held a 5-1 lead after five innings, but Tim Melville and reliever Noel Arguelles gave up five runs in the sixth inning. Cheslor Cuthbert had three hits, including a triple and a homer, and two RBIs. Max Ramirez also had three hits. Jorge Bonifacio knocked in a pair of runs and walked twice.
**Ryan O’Hearn went three for four and raised his average to .392, but Rookie-Advanced Idaho Falls lost 6-3 to Great Falls. Starter Emilio Ogando allowed a run on two hits in three innings. Tony Deshazier, 3-1, allowed three runs on five his in 4 1/3 innings. He struck out five and walked three.
**Three hits were enough for Rookie-Burlington, which won 2-1 at Danville. Niklas Stephenson and three relievers combined on a six-hitter. Stephenson tossed five shutout innings, allowing three hits with no walks and four strikeouts.
To reach Pete Grathoff, send email to email@example.com. Follow him at twitter.com/pgrathoff